WI Healthcare Worker Retaliation Protection Act

  1. Hello all Wisconsin nurses out there. I want to discuss a very important law here in Wisconsin called the Wisconsin Health Care Worker Protection Act.This law gives a health care worker protection from retaliation by their employer or management for reporting illegal/enethical practices of their employer. The Equal Rights Division of Wisconsin Workforce Development enforces this law and takes complaints of retaliated healthcare workers who have reported either in house to their supervisor, or to an outside state agency.It is then investigated by a ERD investigator and if Probable Cause is found it proceeds on to an Administrative Law Hearing. This law provides for attornies fees when you win ,if you dont win your lawyers dont get paid, they may take your case in contingency of winning, as they did mine. This is heard in front of an ALJudge,who has the full authority to find in your favor or dismiss the case entirely. I am going through an appeal process now because despite mounds of evidence and witnesses, I lost. The Nursing Home Industry is a multi billion( yes I said Billion )dollar indusry taht can afford unscrupulous lawyers.My lawyers are very dedicated and did an excellent job, but the state law is just not a strong enough protection mechanism, we need Federal Retaliation protection that provides for attornies fees and punitve damages. My lawyers have assured me they will persue this to the Supreme court if need be.I am contacting our state senator Russ Feingold to see if he would be willing to help enact a stronger powerful Federal law that gives ethical and caring nurses retaliation protection. Anyone here in Wisconsin or other states willing to testify in front of congress or the senate as to their experiences with retaliation for reporting?PM me if interested.
    Last edit by Simplepleasures on Nov 20, '06
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  2. 3 Comments

  3. by   mir'sturtle
    Contact Sen. Herb Kohl and your congressional representative as well. Good luck with your case.
  4. by   BSNtobe2009
    The sad part is, when laws like that are passed, it usually only protects your job for a year or so. After that they can come up with a host of reasons to have you fired, and they can document it to death to prove job incompetence. If a company wants to get rid of a whistleblower, there is a ton of ways they can make that happen.

    The Boards that regulate the healthcare industry need to have a broader scope of authority with regards to anonymous reporting of hospital or other healthcare infractions. Granted, someone might get a little ballsey if they are not identified, but the lower you are on the food chain, the more vulnerable your job is...and you may keep your job, but if you seek management, they never have to promote you.

    Family Leave Act...a large number of those that take the full 3 months allowed by law, are no longer working for the company a year after the leave.

    EEOC...a large number of employees that file complaints with the EEOC, no longer work with the company after the complaint is filed.

    It's sad, but that is big business for you.
  5. by   RNS for Unity
    I think the ANA or WNA need to poll nurses on how many have gotten fired for reasons other than negligence or malpractce. They should teach nursing students the art of politicking or sucking up to the heirarchy. Also nurses need unions and laws to protect them, from being terminated if their practice is sound.
    Your professional colleagues should be supportive of eachother and not attempt to play games by sabotaging your career to make themselves look better.
    Last edit by RNS for Unity on Jan 31, '07

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